One Pensacola weather station recorded 17.7 inches of rain between Monday morning and Wednesday at 7:40 a.m., the National Weather Service reported. At the Pensacola airport, 15.55 inches of rain fell on just Tuesday, from midnight to midnight, setting a record for the rainiest single day in the city. It was so rainy the automated rain gauge failed. The 17.7-inch mark is from another spot in the city. Some estimates of the drenching storm's rain totals go as high as 22 inches.
By comparison, Los Angeles International Airport has recorded 15.9 inches of rain — since Jan. 1, 2012.
Pensacola and nearby Mobile, Ala., are two of the rainiest cities in the United States averaging more than 5 feet of rain in a year, according of the National Climatic Data Center. Los Angeles in a normal year gets a bit less than 13 inches of rain.
"It tells us the wet places are getting wetter and the dry places are getting drier in the U.S. and that's the future climate expected in the U.S.," said Jeff Masters, meteorology director of the private Weather Underground.
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EDITOR'S NOTE—Go Figure, an occasional feature from The Associated Press, explores the news through numbers and what they mean.